Clearing the Path Ahead: Rosie's Advocacy Journey

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Rosie Bartel is a wife, mother, grandmother, educator, and advocate. Her activism has transformed patient-centered outcomes, benefiting people of all ages and all abilities. Rosie’s advocacy began in August of 2009, after she underwent a total right knee replacement that developed into an MRSA staph infection. This healthcare-acquired infection has led to 55 surgeries, over 200 hospitalizations, 100 blood transfusions, a right leg amputation six inches above the knee, and, eventually, a total hip amputation with the removal of part of her pelvic bone. She has also experienced sepsis and septic shock twelve times.

Throughout her journey, Rosie has applied the principles of self-determination and self-direction to share her story and to advise or advocate for others. She believes in helping patients and caregivers find their voices. As an educator, Rosie uses every opportunity to teach children and adults the value of self-advocacy and living a self-directed life. Today, Rosie uses her story to teach medical professionals and researchers and to advise and advocate for patients and their caregivers.

Rosie is a role model for self-direction because she has moved beyond her disability in order to help dozens and dozens of individuals around the world. Rosie’s advocacy has led to positive change in technology, patient safety, and healthcare practices. Rosie continues to live a self-determined life and uses her own journey and has served as a catalyst to bring people up.

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